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Patent Searching

  1. Purpose and Instructions
  2. Introduction
  3. Brainstorming
  4. Index Search
  5. Classification Codes
  6. Classification Definitions
  7. Patent Review
  8. Keyword Searching
  9. Conclusion

Patent Review

Examine individual patents to determine the originality of your invention.
  1. Click on the red P icon to the left of the blue subclass number 163. This will bring up a list of all the U.S. Patents in that particular classification code, in this case more than 1,300 patents. (You can also click on the A icon to bring up a list of published applications in a particular class.) All years have been searched, and the list displays the most recent patents first.
  2. Screenshot showing link from classification schedule to patent list.

  3. Get a preliminary feel for the group by browsing the titles that look like they might describe your invention. Keep in mind that the titles are often short and not overly descriptive. Looking at the patent as a whole is the only way to really decide whether or not the invention is similar to your own. If you conclude that this is indeed the correct classification code, you must examine all the patents to determine if your invention is original.
  4. Screenshot of patent search results list.


  5. To view the patent, click on the patent number. If the patent was issued after 1976 you may view the full text, without images.
     


  6. Please Note: There are other options for viewing patents once you know what you are looking for. Click here are a few of those options (under the heading Quick Links).

    Screenshot of a patent.

  7. Be sure to look at the drawings and claims sections of individual patents. These are two quick ways to determine the originality of your invention.
     
  8. Also, make note of the references cited. Listed are other patents that were thought to be closely related to the patented item.
     
  9. Do this for each class/subclass combination that relates to the invention.

 

8. Keyword Searching ------->